Sink or Swim

  • Charlotte Edmonds

Sink or Swim is a poetic depiction of depression through underwater ballet. Delving into the mind of someone in the depths of depression battling to keep their head above water. ‘If depression is like drowning, I’m constantly struggling to keep my head above water’ Never before has a principal dancer been filmed dancing underwater. This unprecedented vision features two of dance‘s rising stars: Francesca Hayward (Principal Dancer with The Royal Ballet) and Charlotte Edmonds (The Royal Ballet’s Young Choreographer). Directed by the emerging filmmaker Louis-Jack and set to an original score by the acclaimed composer Matt Dunkley. Based upon a self-portrait of the artist Ian Cumberland submerged in a bathtub fully clothed. Charlotte and Louis-Jack have drawn upon recurring metaphors of water and drowning that are used by individuals suffering with depression to describe their experiences. Through the medium of dance the film hopes to raise awareness and understanding of depression in a compelling new way. The film has been made with the support of Mind, Arts Council England, The Royal Opera House, DanceEast, The Linbury Trust and Studio Wayne McGregor.

Project Tags


  • Royal Opera House logo

    Royal Opera House

    • Performing Arts
  • Arts Council England logo

    Arts Council England

    • Arts and Culture
  • NOWNESS logo


    • Arts and Culture
  • D


    • S

      Studio Wayne McGregor